There is no shortage of intrigue when it comes to Cole Perfetti.
After leading all OHL rookies with 74 points in 2018-19, the talented forward followed up that performance with a 111-point sophomore showing that set a Saginaw Spirit single-season record. That success also carried over to the classroom where Perfetti achieved a 93 percent academic average, helping him earn recognition as the CHL Scholastic Player of the Year.
Reason to celebrate has only continued since as Perfetti was selected 10th overall by the Winnipeg Jets last month, while the coming weeks will see the Whitby, Ont., native battle for a position with Team Canada at the upcoming World Junior Championship to be held in Edmonton. Perfetti talked about the opportunity to represent the Great White North and more in the latest edition of the CHL Sunday Spotlight presented by WINMAR:
What was draft day like for you and what was your reaction to being selected by the Jets?
Draft day was an amazing day. It was something I will never forget. It’s something I have worked toward my entire life and to be able to spend it with my family and friends was something very special. To be picked by the Jets, they are a great organization and I am so thrilled to be a part of them. To be picked by Crystal Hawerchuk was a real honour and a very special moment, so I am very grateful for that.
How have you stayed active during this unique offseason?
This summer has been a pretty similar offseason for me. I have just been skating and working out like normal. The one thing I have really done this year is golfing with my buddies. I have spent a lot of time on the course this year and have been doing that a lot this offseason.
You had the opportunity to attend World Junior Camp last year and witnessed the team go on to win gold. Would being a part of Canada’s National Junior Team be a dream come true?
Making Canada’s National Junior Team this year would be a huge honour and a dream come true. It has been a dream of mine for as long as I can remember. When I was three, four, five years old, I remember watching the World Juniors and thinking one day I want to be on that team. To make the team this year would be a dream come true and something that I would love to do and an honour. I am really hoping that it can happen and I can represent Canada on the world stage this year.
Should you be back in Saginaw, what are your goals with the Spirit this season?
The main goal this year with Saginaw is to win the OHL and a Memorial Cup. I have been able to be on very successful Saginaw Spirit teams the last two years and come up short both times – one in the playoffs and one due to COVID-19 – so it would be the main goal and my main focus is winning a championship this year with Saginaw.
What area of your game are you most focused on further developing?
My main focus this summer and for the future is going to be my speed and strength. If I want to make the jump to the next level relatively soon, I think those are the two things I need to work on. That is my main focus for the future.